Monday, March 15, 2010
Recently, two different television programs have rekindled my interest in genealogy. I once spent a few months trying to assemble our family tree. I interviewed my parents (relentlessly) about who was who and where and when. These interviews yielded some really good family lore, but without technological help, I ended after just a couple of generations. I did not have the time or attention span to write away to county seats for birth and death records.
Now you can log on and discover all sort of records. And if you're lucky, some distant cousin will have already assembled branches of the family tree for you to borrow into your own.
It was just such a discovery that I had this morning. I was mesmerized by the branch extending back through the 1800s, hoping it would reach back to the Revolutionary War. My eyes were dry and my back ached from too long in front of the computer, but I was transfixed. Nothing else in the room mattered.
Then Abe, the black cat, jumped up on the desk. Well, I don't mind if he's on the desk as long as he does not knock my papers around. So I clicked another generation. I discovered Gabriel Williams, born 1756 in Maryland. And as the website offered me the opportunity to view a source titled "Revolutionary War Records: Widow Files for Benefits", I heard a crunch. CRUNCH!
And that's when I glanced over at Abe. And discovered that he was chewing on the head of a mouse. Still attached to the mouse's (dead) body. On my desk.
You see. I told you you'd thank me.